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Tabletop frequency comb set up identifies molecules based on IR absorption.
NIST’s tabletop frequency comb apparatus (foreground) can quickly identify molecules based on their absorption of infrared light. The yellow squiggle at the top of the screen is the electric field of mid-infrared laser light that has passed through air in the lab. The orange pattern at the bottom of the screen shows the corresponding spectrum of the light, with the downward spikes indicating the exact colors absorbed by water detected in the air. Credit: NIST.
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